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Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
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h3ltrsk3ltr Offline
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Post: #1
Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
I've done a pretty decent amount of outdoor shit in my life. I've stayed in field-expedient shelters in sub-zero weather, hiked portions of the Appalachian trail, canoed in Boundary Waters, been to a variety of summer camps, fishing trips, canoe trips, white-water rafting (on the river where they filmed Deliverance) and survival training.
I've always enjoyed being outdoors and exploring nature, and I didn't think about it until recently during a discussion with another forum member who mentioned he'd like to do more of this stuff.

I put together an overview but would like to hear about other members' trips. I'm particularly interested in extended survival experiences and hitchhiking.


Planning

All you need to do is find an undeveloped area and spend the night. However, I've found some general practices can make the experience a lot better.

1) Less is more. The best camping trips are simply about enjoying nature, usually with a few good buddies. Complex plans, trying to plan out every detail /having a strict itinerary, really just defeat the purpose
2) Don't spend a ton. For guys, buying a compass to go camping is like a fat bitch buying new gym shoes. You probably won't need half the stuff you think you do
3) It's supposed to be fun. If you're getting stressed out about planning it, don't invite me, I don't want to go camping with you
4) Determine water and food needs before-hand. Find out if there are re-supply points nearby or along the way. You don't want too much or too little so make sure this is the one thing you hash-out well ahead of time


Equipment

Just ask yourself if you really need it before you bring it. Some basic stuff I've always needed is below but it really depends on what you're doing. Tailor your equipment to your mission.

1) Backpack - Pretty much the most essential piece. I've used my Osprey Stratos 24 since around 2008. I've had other fancy backpacks come and go in the meantime, this has always been the most useful.

[Image: SOBL.jpg]

2) Sleeping bag - I've got a down North Face that's rated for -40 degrees Fahrenheit. Even in freezing weather, I've never needed to sleep inside it. It makes a great and expensive pad though. I recommend this instead (surplus bivy sack) with a cheap sleeping bag.

3) Tent - After lugging tents all over the place, setting them up, carrying them home with all the extra mud...I find that mobility beats infrastructure when it comes to camping.

I'd go with this (snugpack shelter) over a clunky tent any day.

4) Cooking equipment/Food - These two can't really be separated. This datasheet is more specifically about camping and not bonfires, which are fun but different. For camping, you don't really want a bunch of extra shit that you have to lug around.

My staples:
- Cliff bars
- Tin foil dinners
- A tin of hard boiled eggs
- Apples
- Trail Mix
- Beef Jerkey
- Rice
- Baked Beans
- Alternatively, MRE's can be bought from Amazon and might be a good option if you're backpacking long distances

Cooking equipment
- Canteen Cup
- Water bottle
- Frying pan setup
- Camp stove
- Flask

5) Shoes - I prefer these or these. They MUST fit. I hiked 40 miles on the AT in poorly fitting, clunky boots. It was hell. You might think they are snug enough in the store, but you should make sure you get the right ones, maybe go a half-size smaller than usual

[Image: wolve415779_113971_jb.jpg]

6) Clothing - Dress for the environment. Again, keep it simpler than you think you need to. They sell cool stuff at sporting goods stores but it's mostly a waste of money

Underwear and socks - Personal preference but remember: Cotton absorbs moisture, polypropylene, polyester, and wool wick moisture and are better to have touching your skin if you are going to be sweating a lot.
Pants - I like a pair of comfortable jeans or shorts but something with side pockets can be really handy. I've had pretty good success with the "zippered shorts/pants thing"
Shirt - A 'Dryfit' style material (polyester) seems to work pretty well. I throw a long-sleeve (usually plaid) button-up on when it gets cool.
Jacket - This really depends on the weather. Layers are your best friend in cold weather.

7) Rain gear - Anything from an expensive, breathable and lightweight jacket to a trash bag with a hole in it

8) Headgear - If it's cold, I prefer a shemagh over a synthetic balaclava, but up to you. I go with a beanie in the winter and a regular baseball cap in the summer.

***Notes about clothing***

- Unless you are experienced and acclimatized with the area you are camping/hiking in, body-temp changes will likely be unexpected. Layered clothing allows you to adjust to these changes.

- I keep clothes in a waterproof compression sack when not using them. I take the extra few minutes to unpack and repack properly if I need something. Rain can catch you quickly and that's not a good time to be adjusting a poorly packed item of clothing.

- Less is more.

9) Miscellaneous - Be sure you need the following, these items can add a lot of weight
Knives/hatchets/machetes - A regular Swiss-army works just fine
Compass - If you have a compass around your neck and don't know what a topo map is, you're wrong
Map - Doesn't have to be a topo but it's cool to have one if you're backpacking and essential for going off-trail
Electronics - Ipod, phone/ gps (i've never used one)/ weather radio (if it rains, you'll know)/headphones
Waterbottle- You need water, but you don't need a lot. Again, make sure you know where and if water is available on your hike. Aquamira (link) can replace a lot of extra water and one bottle can be refilled at a pump
Flashlight - Usually handy. A little mag-light will be fine but if you want to spring for a head-lamp, they can really come in handy
Extra shoelaces - 550 cord works better and has more uses. A small roll of this can be helpful to have on hand
Sunglasses - I wear my Rayban aviators everywhere. Maybe I look a bit douchey but they never break or bend and they fold up nice and slim for easy storage
Compression Sacks - I always bring some for water-proofing purposes
Hard Case - I keep breakable shit in a hard plastic, waterproof case
Watch


One more thing for now - Be smart about who you go with. A bad companion is a disaster when it comes to camping. You're in the woods, possibly far from civilization, and dependant on each other. Complainers are easy to spot and weed out, but other things are not so obvious.

Just because someone is your friend doesn't make them a good camping buddy. A few things to look for:

- The longer you're going for, the more important selection is
- You need someone who will match your pace (stopping too much on a long hump? don't plan on walking the next day)
- Have an understanding of what you're getting into beforehand, have an agreement on the plan to a reasonable extent


Camping and Game

It's a cool way to find new lays while doing fun, manly shit.

Camps - Adult camps
Hiking meetup groups
With a social circle
Take a girl on a day hike/ overnight trip



I have a ton more info on this beyond the general info provided here. Let me know if it would be of interest.

Per Ardua Ad Astra | "I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum"

Cobra and I did some awesome podcasts with awesome fellow members.
(This post was last modified: 07-08-2015 09:18 PM by h3ltrsk3ltr.)
07-08-2015 09:09 PM
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Post: #2
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Excellent post/data sheet/advice

I had a good laugh at this as well
Quote: It's supposed to be fun. If you're getting stressed out about planning it, don't invite me, I don't want to go camping with you

This is why I don't go camping with people. I camped for work for a number of years and view everything as "how fast can we tear down and be back on the trail making miles" because sitting around camp meant losing money. I am not fun to camp with.

Why do the heathen rage and the people imagine a vain thing? Psalm 2:1 KJV
07-08-2015 09:57 PM
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ball dont lie Offline
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Post: #3
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Hitchhiking: The most important thing you bring is an electric shaver that has a long battery life. A clean shaven face is a man's best friend to get picked up. The big beard can go over well too, but a smooth, freshly shaven face shows people you aren't a maniac killer.
07-09-2015 02:40 AM
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h3ltrsk3ltr Offline
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Post: #4
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Haha, Thanks Dr. H. I'll scratch you off my list here...

Personally, I like to go solo in general, whether it's hitting the bars or hitting the trails.

I'd also appreciate the feedback from you fella's, I know it's tacky to comment on my post this early but I know men out there like doing manly shit like camping. I'm sure y'all got plenty of great input.

I've been writing more stuff on this all night, detailed connections to game are on the way.

Per Ardua Ad Astra | "I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum"

Cobra and I did some awesome podcasts with awesome fellow members.
07-09-2015 02:45 AM
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h3ltrsk3ltr Offline
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Post: #5
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
(07-09-2015 02:40 AM)ball dont lie Wrote:  Hitchhiking: The most important thing you bring is an electric shaver that has a long battery life. A clean shaven face is a man's best friend to get picked up. The big beard can go over well too, but a smooth, freshly shaven face shows people you aren't a maniac killer.

Where have you hitchhiked?? Can you give us some stories or more tips? I've always wanted to do it. I read a bunch of message boards and hear Ukraine is the best country for it. Any experience in the U.S.?

Per Ardua Ad Astra | "I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum"

Cobra and I did some awesome podcasts with awesome fellow members.
07-09-2015 02:47 AM
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Bad Hussar Offline
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Post: #6
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Great Datasheet helter.

For people who don't really like roughing it too much consider more formal trails, where the trail and overnight huts are maintained by some sort of authority and you just take yourself, backpack containing food, clothing and such from hut to hut.

Also, try to avoid food specifically developed for hiking. The dehydrated stuff. It is, well, disgusting. I was recently on a 4 night hike and ate fresh meat for the first 3 nights. And it was hot (around 28 deg Celsius). Just vacuum pack the meat, freeze it solid and wrap in several layers of those thermal bags supermarkets sell so that people can get their refrigerated items home without them melting or spoiling. Tape it up so that air cannot enter. Each night's meal in a separate package. There's nothing like having steak cooked over a fire on night 3 of a difficult hike when everyone else is having reconstituted soy something or other. No, didn't get sick, though I didn't push it by taking stuff for night 4. Fresh veggies are difficult, but sun-dried fruit is another great option. Either eat as is, or reconstitute with water.
07-09-2015 10:18 AM
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Post: #7
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Shit brutha, I have a conversation with you about going tenting...you turned this thread out fast.

Great post.

I plan on buying a backpack tent in the next few days. Yeah, I want a tent there. I'll learn the hard way.

I'd also throw out this great thread by BlurredSevens. There's some info there as well.

Also relevant, the Backpack thread

Edit: Also, you forgot cigars and a torch lighter. Might as well have a good Joya de Nicaragua with that flask of whiskey.

“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.”
(This post was last modified: 07-09-2015 02:59 PM by heavy.)
07-09-2015 02:38 PM
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birdie num num Offline
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Post: #8
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Great post, helterskelter.

I've been backpacking in the western US for the past 15 years. Next week I'm heading out on a 5-day solo trip in the Sierra Nevada high country. No phones, no internet, no 24 hr. news, no Caitlyn Jenner updates - it's sheer bliss and a needed antidote to our increasingly stupid world. To me the wilderness is perfection. The only thing touched by humans is the trail.

What you said about the weight of your pack is crucial. I've been with newbies who brought all kinds of useless shit that added an extra ten pounds to their pack and they suffered for it. You only bring something if you know that you'll absolutely need it. Take care of the ounces and the ounces will take care of the pounds.

As for food, forget about those store bought dehydrated meals. A few years ago I purchased an Excaliber dehydrator. It's one of the best purchases I've made. There are so many foods that do well dehydrated. An entire bottle of spaghetti sauce is reduced to a few ounces and is reduced to the size of a fruit roll. Making beef jerky is easy. Sweet potato bark is another nutritious and easy to make snack.

I agree about not getting too fixated on plans. It's best to have a general idea of where you want to go, but not have to get stressed with a rigid schedule and about putting in x amount of miles each day. I do, however, plan out every meal. If not, you will either bring too much, which is extra weight, or you'll run out of food before the trip is over.

Happy trails!

“When you're born into this world, you're given a ticket to the freak show. If you're born in America you get a front row seat.”

- George Carlin
(This post was last modified: 07-09-2015 10:39 PM by birdie num num.)
07-09-2015 10:35 PM
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Post: #9
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Just bumping this old thread.

I find that taking girls you've known for a while out camping is brilliant. I previously did this as it was a hobby of mine and I just had them follow along with me, but I've noticed some side benefits that make me want to take every future girl out if I can.

For instance, girls who are willing to do this aren't as materialistic or "princessy". They're willing to slum it for a couple nights in a tent, and in general I find it's associated with better personalities. Even if they are only willing to do it because you asked them to, it's still good enough. Deep in the woods there's nowhere to run and there's the very real possibility of running out of food/water, hypothermia, and attacks from wild animals(Personally, I've got a handgun on me just in case, but in the area I camp in it probably isn't necessary to make sure she knows how to use it. It helps though). Some of the girls I've been with, including my current LTR, like to say how "strong" and "independent" they are but out there where it's truly dangerous, you really see how scared they get, how helpless they are, and how willing they are to submit to a confident, masculine man. The concept of "deep conversion" is probably a bit of a scam but if anything is deep conversion, this is definitely it. On a side note, if you have watched Always Sunny, "the implication" is there to some extent, even if it obviously is consensual.

My current girl doesn't go on her phone too much, but I always like to go somewhere where there is no cell signal. It truly helps both of you to be in the moment. You might think it's mainly to make the girl stop being annoying, but the benefit of being unplugged from the world yourself isn't to be underestimated. It's also really nice to go in the middle of nowhere and know no one else in the world is nearby. I like to take a bit of MDMA with the girl I'm with and truly bond with her and experience the greatness of nature together. And obviously, we can fuck like animals and there's no one to see or hear us. Sometimes it's good in the tent but I find the best thing is if the girl is somewhat fit, then hike up to to the top of a hill/small mountain somewhere and especially if it's sunny, just take her clothes off and fuck her overlooking the amazing views.
(This post was last modified: 10-17-2015 06:06 PM by Helix.)
10-17-2015 06:05 PM
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Sourcecode Offline
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Post: #10
RE: Camping/backpacking/hiking/hitchhiking thread
Bumping an old thread.
I don't feel like typing up a big data sheet because this trip was tailored for me and might not work for everyone.

It's like to know other people's experiences though.

I recently spent a little over a week out in the doorw corner area.
I flew into Phoenix with all my gear, rented a car and drove up to the Grand Canyon and up through parts of Utah.

I took a 65 liter bag with all my regular hiking gear and a second duffle with camera gear and misc supplies.
I also took my pistol and a shotgun.

First day at canyon village, I drove out to the east end with the intent to use the far campsites.. Unfortunately there had been a minor animal attack and the site was closed.

I had to camp in the regular sites.
Ignore the signs that say campsite full...
If you arrive before noon, there are always sites available at like 12 dollars night.

They are almost always booked online, but a good number see reserved for walk ups.

The trading post / grocery story in grand canyon village has plenty of food and supplies.

I chose to buy a cooler at Wal-Mart and stick it up with things like stew meat, rice, And the regular mixes.
I also bought multiple gallons of water.
Most of this stayed in the vehicle, which I used as storage.

I would park, Load my pack with a day or two of supply and then hike off.

Hiking the Grand Canyon was amazing.
The back area is desolate. I saw one group every 2-3 hours.

I also assume there would be more... Nature noise, but once you get deep into the Canyon... It's a deadening silence.

Hiking in August is also horrendous even for a fit person.. You're battling 100 degree heat and elevation.
Bring more water than you think you need. I went through a gallon every other hour and wouldn't have minded having more if I could carry it.

I feel like three nights were enough.
You only need half a day to see all the points at the village. You only need one night to get a perfect sunset and sunrise picture

The rest of the days should be spent hiking the trails.

To be continued... When I have more time.
I'm writing from my phone.

I am the cock carousel
(This post was last modified: 09-24-2018 02:45 PM by Sourcecode.)
09-24-2018 01:55 PM
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